Pittsburgh Steelers

Ben Roethlisberger, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Ryan Switzer, and Darrius Heyward-Bey. Image source: www.steelers.com/photos/archive/top-pics/

First 40 years’ Pathetic and horrible sporting performance by a team, that backed by a relentless owner, the Steelers owe everything to its founder, owner Rooney. So the story of the pirates is really the deeds of Rooney, his patience and tolerance and sacrifice for a failing team and franchise over its first 4 decades, a feat unequivocally distinct. Subsidized over 4 decades, the Pirates, later the Steelers, didn’t show much promise until the 70s, after that their big leap ahead and finally their steep ascent beginning with the 1974 Super Bowl IX title, after that they looked back much.

Pittsburgh Steelers, from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, is a prominent professional American football club that takes part in the NFL from AFC’s Northern division. One of the oldest gridiron football clubs, it began as a semi-professional team. Remained at the bottom of the league for most of its first 4 decades, it is fortunate to have an enduring owner, Art Rooney. But later on it turned around to win not only one but in total, a record, of six Super Bowl titles, eight AFC titles and 23 divisional championships, becoming one of the most successful football teams of the twenty-first century. At present, it plays its home games in the Heinz Field, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Current Team Roster

Quarterbacks: Joshua Dobbs (5), Brogan Roback, Ben Roethlisberger (7), Mason Rudolph (2)

Wide receivers: Trey Griffey (15), Tevin Jones(14), Donte Moncrief, Eli Rogers(17), JuJu Smith-Schuster(19), Diontae Spencer, Ryan Switzer (RS, 10), James Washington(13), Ka’Raun White

Running backs: James Conner (30), Trey Edmunds (33), Roosevelt Nix (FB, 45), Jaylen Samuels (38), Ralph Webb (40), Malik Williams

Tight ends: Bucky Hodges (82), Vance McDonald (89), Kevin Rader, Christian Scotland-Williamson (49)

Offensive linemen: Zach Banner (T, 72), David DeCastro (66, G), Matt Feiler (71, T), Ramon Foster (73, G), Jerald Hawkins (65, T), Patrick Morris (62, C), Chukwuma Okorafor (76, T), Maurkice Pouncey (53, C), R. J. Prince (64, G), Alejandro Villanueva (78, T)

Defensive linemen: Tyson Alualu (94, DE), Javon Hargrave (79, NT), Cameron Heyward (97, DE), Lavon Hooks (95, DE), Daniel McCullers (93, NT), Conor Sheehy (DE), Stephon Tuitt (91, DE)

Linebackers: Keion Adams (99, OLB), Olasunkanmi Adeniyi (92, OLB), Mark Barron (ILB), Jon Bostic (51, ILB), Anthony Chickillo (56, OLB), Bud Dupree (48, OLB), Tyler Matakevich (No. 44, ILB), Tegray Scales( ILB), Robert Spillane (ILB), T. J. Watt (90, OLB), Vince Williams (98, ILB)

Defensive backs: Brian Allen (29, CB), Marcus Allen (27, FS), Artie Burns (25, CB) ,Marcelis Branch( FS), Jordan Dangerfield (37, SS), Sean Davis (21, FS), Terrell Edmunds (34, SS), Joe Haden (23, CB), Mike Hilton (28, CB), Steven Nelson (CB), Cameron Sutton(20,CB), Herb Waters (35,CB)

Special teams: Jordan Berry (4, P), Chris Boswell (9, K), Kameron Canaday (57, LS), Matt McCrane (3, K)

Summary of History

Founded on the 8th July 1933, by Art Rooney, allegedly from the winnings of the horse race, the club remained in the Rooney family since its formation. Played their first thirty years in Forbes Field, sharing with the baseball club the “Pittsburgh Pirates“, Rooney’s football team adopted the name ‘Pirates’ from them. The team played their first season in 1933 under the player cum Coach Forrest Douds. Their first victory was against the Chicago Cardinals 14–13. They started 3-6-2, followed by 0-10 until the late 40s their achievement remained much the same with a few isolated better seasons, they even went down 0-10 in 1944. In 1947, they made their first playoff but suffered a horrible defeat in the hand of the Eagles (21-0) in the divisional playoff match, which their only playoff until 1972. During the 40s, the team changed its name mainly due to its merger with another team. Prompted by economic reasons and scarcity of qualified, suitable players due to the WW2 draft they merged with another team twice.

In 1943, merging with the Philadelphia Eagles adopting the name ‘Phil-Pitt Eagles’, commonly known as The Steagles and in the following season merging again with the Chicago Cardinals, they adopted the name Card-Pitt finishing a 0-10 season. In 1940, in off-season, Rooney sold the Steelers to Alexis Thompson, then took 50% share in the Philadelphia Eagles and then after some time and events, re-branded the team the Pittsburgh Steelers. This team swaps, re-branding and finally settling with the Pirates and all of this happening during the off-season, hence the NFL ruled the ownership of the Steelers to be continuous for Art Rooney.

Nothing much happened until 1971. In 1969, Chuck Noll (1969–1991), was appointed as the head coach, had an excellent eye for talents, selected many key players that went on break the shackle victory and gradual ascend toward the top of the league. Among many key players in the early 70s are, “Mean” Joe Greene, Mel Blount, Terry Bradshaw, Jack Ham, Franco Harris, Mike Webster, John Stallworth, Lynn Swann, and Jack Lambert. These new signees delivered what the team desired and dreamt of for many years, not only they won major titles but also gradually ascended to become a prominent team. Began with 1972’s AFC central championship, their first divisional championship, then in 1974, they won both their first ever conference championship and the Super Bowl (IX). Within the six seasons (1974-79), the Steelers won four Super Bowls (1974,’75,’78,’79), in the 70s they won 7 divisional championships (1972, 1974, 1975-79), the Steelers also won the conference championships in the same season they won Super Bowl in the 1970s (1974,’75,’78,’79).

The 80s was a mediocre one, a huge decline following their one of the most successful decade, only two divisional championships, 1983, 1984 and 4 playoff berths. After Noll’s retirement in 1991, he was succeeded by Bill Cowher (1992–2006). In his 15 seasons, with 149–90–1 record, Bill Cowher guided the team over 8 divisional titles, 10 playoff appearances, and 2 Super Bowl matchup including the Super Bowl XL (2005). In 2007 Mike Tomlin succeeded Cowher as the head coach; his first successful season was 2008, in which the Steelers won all 3 major championships, the Super Bowl, conference championship and the divisional championship.

In 2008, Super Bowl they have beaten the Arizona Cardinals to claim their last Super Bowl title. In 2010 with a 12–4 regular, they won the AFC North divisional title and beaten the Jets by 24–19 to win the AFC championship but lost to Green Bay Packers 31–25 in the Super Bowl. In the 2014 and 2016, they berthed the playoffs but lost in both of them, winning only the divisional championships in both of these seasons. During the 2013-17 seasons, their key players were the kicker Chris Boswell, Le’Veon Bell, Antonio Brown, and Ben Roethlisberger. As per the regular season, which went well for the Steelers with a record 13-3. In 2018 they had a moderate season of 9-6-1 record.

Championships of Pittsburgh Steelers

Championships League championships (6)
Super Bowl: IX (1974), (X) (1975), XIII( 1978), XIV( 1979), XL(2005), XLIII (2008)

Conference championships (8)
American Football Conference (AFC): 1974, 1975, 1978, 1979, 1995, 2005, 2008, 2010

Division championships (23)
American Football Conference (AFC) Central: 1972, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1983, 1984, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 2001
American Football Conference (AFC) North: 2002, 2004, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2014, 2016, 2017

Most Notable Players

Many standing out players played with the Steelers over its long history, of them few most distinguished are:

Name Positions Seasons Games Played (Times)
Mean Joe Greene Defensive tackle 1969–1981 181
Terry Bradshaw Quarterback 1970–1983 168
Franco Harris Running back 1972–1983 165
Jack Lambert Linebacker 1974–1984 146
Rod Woodson Cornerback 1987–1996 134
Bill Dudley Halfback 1942, 1945–1946 26
Troy Polamalu Defensive Back 2003–2014 158
Hines Ward Wide receiver 1998–2011 217
Jerome Bettis Running back 1996–2005 192
Walt Kiesling Guard 1937–1938 12
Mel Blount Cornerback 1970–1983 200
Jack Butler Cornerback 1951–1959 104
Dermontti Dawson Center 1988–2000 184
Jack Ham Linebacker 1971–1982 162
John Henry Johnson Fullback, halfback 1960–1965 143
Bobby Layne Quarterback 1958–1962 175
John Stallworth Wide receiver 1974–1987 165
Ernie Stautner Defensive tackle 1950–1963 173
Lynn Swann Wide receiver 1974–1982 116
Mike Webster Center 1974–1988 245

Source:
https://www.profootballhof.com/teams/pittsburgh-steelers/team-history/
https://www.britannica.com/topic/Pittsburgh-Steelers
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pittsburgh_Steelers